I have a confession to make: I like horror movies. But not the ones that you’re thinking of. I’m not talking about movies like the Saw series. In fact, I’ve never seen those movies. I like the cheesy B movie made-for-tv horror flicks that come on the SciFi channel! I love ‘em. These type of movies usually always follow a common pattern. A group people (usually college age) are on some kind of trip together. They encounter a strange place or situation. Through the coercion of one or two of the members, they decide to investigate the situation or explore the place. The group either gets separated or they decide to split up, until all or most of them are all alone in the dark with some creature out to suck on their insides! Here’s what happens: they’re all running around in a hopeless situation while they are getting picked off one at a time. Inevitably, a lost girl runs into a lost guy and she says, “Oh thank God! Thank God I found you!” Now, they are both still hopelessly lost while some monster is out to have them for dinner. And deep down inside they both know that they are going to meet a very gruesome and painful death. But nevertheless they are just happy not to be alone anymore!
The reason horror movies are "scary" is because they play off of our fears. I think these movies follow this common pattern because it hits at the core of our deepest darkest fear as human beings. We were made for community. We were not made to be alone. To be completely and utterly alone is the essence of hell. Whether we want to admit that hell exists or not, I think all people are born with an innate sense that hell does exist. When we think of hell we usually think of fire. Indeed, Scripture does describe hell (or at least the final hell: "the lake of fire") as a place of fire. But there are many other scriptural descriptions of well, most of which depict pain, torture, fear, darkness, and utter isolation. This is hell, that having once died and appearing before the throne of God, and seeing the face of pure goodness and holiness, seeing the very face of that which your heart has longed for (perhaps unknowingly) all of your earthly life, only to hear him command his angles concerning you: "Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth."
Hell is real. Many of us do not want to admit it intellectually, but we know it in our gut. It is our deepest darkest fear to be lost and completely alone in a hellish situation. There will be no moment when you cry out "Oh Thank God! Thank God I found you!" Your only cry will be "Oh God! Oh God!"
Wow. Thank God we have someone to rescue us from that nightmare.